Billy Idol, Duff McKagan + More Pay Tribute To Johnny Ramone
Sept. 15 will mark 10 years to the day that Johnny Ramone died from prostate cancer. Last week (Aug. 24), a bunch of his biggest fans, including Duff McKagan, Billy Idol and Rob Zombie, honored the Ramones guitarist with a tribute concert at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, where a statue of Johnny sits.
According to Rolling Stone, Zombie kicked it off by playing four Ramones songs -- 'Blitzkreig Bop,' 'Rock N' Roll High School,' 'Beat on the Brat' and 'Teenage Lobotomy' (which they mistakenly call 'Lobotomy') -- and a cover of Motorhead's 'R.A.M.O.N.E.S.' Their set took less than 10 minutes.
"We're here for one reason, and one reason only: to pay tribute to our good friend Johnny Ramone," Zombie said. "I miss him every day. He was a wonderful kind guy. There was nobody like him. There was nothing like the Ramones, so we're here for Johnny, Joey, Dee Dee and Tommy."
Fronting a band that included McKagan and former Sex Pistol Steve Jones, Billy Idol sang 'I Wanna Be Sedated' and the Rivieras' 'California Sun' (which the Ramones covered on 1977's 'Leave Home.'
"I was freaked out by the Ramones," McKagan said during a panel session. "As a 13-year-old kid living up in Seattle, the Ramones were the first punk band to come play. They were like my Kiss. So 10 or 12 years later, 'Appetite [for Destruction]' came out, I got an opportunity to meet the Ramones, and I actually didn't want to because I didn't want to ruin anything. They still remain bigger than life to me."
Organized by Johnny's widow, Linda, the evening was a benefit for the Johnny Ramone Foundation & Dr. David Agus at the Center for Applied Medicine at USC. With Tommy, the last original member of the Ramones, gone, Linda said that next year's event will be a tribute to all four Ramones.
Watch Billy Idol, Duff McKagan and Steve Jones Perform 'I Wanna Be Sedated'
Watch Billy Idol, Duff McKagan and Steve Jones Perform 'California Sun'